Today is our 13th wedding anniversary! Wow, how the time has flown. So much has changed in the past 13 years! It's kind of fun to look back and think about how our life together started and think about how far we've come.
I met Shawn when I was 20 and he was 23. When I met him I was going through a hard time in my life.
When I left high school I thought I had life all figured out. Didn't we all at that age? :) I was dating a guy who I was sure I was going to marry, I had plans for college, I knew exactly what I wanted to do and where I wanted my life to go.
Then I went to college for a year and realized that what I thought I wanted to do wasn't what I really wanted to do, the guy I thought I was going to marry decided that he had met the person HE wanted to marry and it was no longer me, I moved across the country for a year to sort all that out and while I was gone my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Pretty much all my plans and everything in my life had suddenly flipped upside down and I was pretty miserable.
So I moved back home and got a job working at the corporate offices of multi-level marketing company while I tried to figure out how to untangle the mess my life had become. Shawn was one of the very first people I met on my first day of work.
I would love to say that when I met Shawn it was love at first sight, I knew right away that he was the person I was going to marry and that we walked off into the sunset, but that was not the case! Shawn seemed like a nice guy and we actually did become friends really quickly, but dating him was the farthest thing from my mind. I was pretty preoccupied with all the chaos in my life at the time and after just having my heart broken I wasn't in a big hurry to open myself up to that again.
Shawn, on the other hand, says that he did decide pretty quickly that I was the person he wanted to marry. The poor guy just had to wait for me to sort my life out first!
After being friends and co-workers for a while Shawn asked me on a date. Honestly, I really didn't want to go. I finally said yes because Shawn is so ridiculously NICE that I couldn't possibly say no, lol.
Shawn grew up in a little town about 30 miles from the town I grew up in and on our first date he took me on a tour of the top 10 sites of his town. Apparently he and his friends had come up with a wacky list of silly things you had to see in their town. It was a date like no other date I had ever been on and to my surprise it was actually one of the funnest dates I've ever been on. When Shawn and I are together there is always lots of laughing and lots of fun. My life was really heavy and difficult at the time and from our very first date I realized that he was the one person who could take my mind off all of that. I could relax around him and he didn't care that I was a mess from all the crap going on in my life.
He quickly became my best friend, my shoulder to cry on and my constant companion. For almost two years we spent pretty much every minute together. We were together all day at work and we hung out after work. During that time I actually rented the apartment right next door to him, so we even became neighbors. We had breakfast together in the mornings, dinner together at night and did our grocery shopping together. We were practically joined at the hip!
I still wasn't ready to call it a relationship, but he was definitely my best friend. I honestly don't know how I would have gotten through that time of my life without him. He was there the night my dad died, he was there when the ex-boyfriend came back into my life long enough to break my heart again....no matter what crappy thing came into my life at the time, he was there making me laugh my way through it.
Lookin back I feel really bad for what I put Shawn through during that time. He was definitely in love with me, and I knew it, I just wasn't ready to return the feeling. I spent a lot of time crying to him about my ex-boyfriend. It didn't matter to him. He was willing to wait until I sorted things out.
I eventually DID sort things out. It may have taken me two years but at some point I finally had an epiphony and realized that I was in love with my best friend! I had been looking for someone who was loving and kind and patient and fun to be with and someone I wanted to spend every minute with and that person had been right in front of me the whole time. Shawn makes me happy. He's the person I want to go to for comfort on my bad days and the person I want to celebrate the good days with. He's the person I gossip to, the person I laugh with, the person I tell my secrets to and the person who accepts me for who I am. He's gentle and loving and funny and patient and he makes me smile.
So I finally came to my senses and we got married. We started our marriage 13 years ago in a little apartment full of hand me down furniture with $100 between the two of us. We were young and naive and happy. Shawn was in pharmacy school for the first four years of our marriage. We had Josh a month before our third anniversary and then moved 300 miles away so that Shawn could do his internships for school. We intended to only be here for a year while he did his internships, but once that year was up we never left and 13 years later we're still here!
As soon as Shawn finished pharmacy school and got his first real job we built a house and two years later Matthew joined our family. A few years later Shawn got a better job, we moved to a bigger house and a year or so later started working on Clarissa's adoption.
Now here we are, 13 years and three kids later. We're older, wiser, we had ups and downs but we're happy. Shawn is still the person who makes me laugh, the person I want to spend every minute with and the person who makes me smile. He's a great friend, a wonderful husband and an awesome father. There's nothing better than being married to your best friend. :)